Business Profiles

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Kalispell Grand Hotel

Kalispell Grand Hotel at nightIn the decades she's managed the Kalispell Grand Hotel, Joann Schadewitz knew she would keep the business on the city's bustling Main Street. She's quick to point out that in all practicality, she has no choice in the matter since the hotel isn't going anywhere any time soon, but she is sure they would stay downtown regardless. "It's almost easier to name why you wouldn't want to do business downtown," Schadewitz said. "It is an extreme pleasure to do business downtown.


Imagination Station

imagination station stick horses21 years ago, two Whitefish moms opened a small toy store, 20 feet by 20 feet, no bigger than two shipping containers. They were starting small. Neither of them had ever expected to get into the toy business. Now they’ve moved into a much bigger spaces, managing large Imagination Station locations in both downtown Whitefish and Kalispell. “Back then, we had no idea what we were doing,” said Mary Wirbrod, one of the co-founders, whose children were 5 and 7 when the doors to Imagination Station Whitefish first opened.Mary and the other founder, Denise Magstadt, were simply fed up with the fact that neither their hometown nor the surrounding towns had a toy store. So Mary, who was an administrator the Whitefish Montessori School, and Denise, who ran a childcare program, decided to open one of their own.

Flowers by Hansen

Flowers by HansonIn 1994, Debbie Snyder told her husband that she was going to get a job in a flower shop. She hadn’t worked outside the home since their marriage in 1978, but she grew up in Kalispell and knew the valley’s streets by heart. So Jane Drent, who owned Flowers By Hansen at the time, hired Debbie as a part-time delivery girl. Not long after, Jane invited Debbie to try her hand at flower design.

“I’ve always loved flowers,” Debbie says. She inherited this passion from her mother and grandmother, who both gardened. They grew sweet peas, daisies, and gladiolus flowers in the backyard, which Debbie collected and arranged in her mother’s vases.

Paint, Metal and Mud

Paint Metal and Mud If you ever doubt that the beauty of the mountains surrounding Kalispell can inspire art in every medium, step into Paint, Metal & Mud. Twelve local artists comprise this 18-year-old cooperative, which sits just off Main Street next to the Kalispell Grand Hotel, and much of their work takes cues from striking natural elements of the Flathead Valley.

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